On Fat Tuesday, it’s practically required that we stuff ourselves with gumbo, jambalaya, Hoppin’ John, king cake, and other calorie bombs. But who wants to wake up Wednesday with that bloated, fatty-food hangover? So gather your krewe for vegan versions of Mardi Gras favorites, and you’ll be having beads thrown at you like it’s 10 a.m. on Bourbon Street.
Heading to New Orleans for Fat Tuesday? Here is a list of vegan-friendly joints in the big easy.
Here are a couple of our favorite recipes if you aren’t planning to flash anyone in the great outdoors this week;
Sassy Vegetable Gumbo
1 dried chipotle chili, soaked in very hot water to cover for 30 minutes
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 large onion, diced
1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups vegetable stock or water
1 14.5-oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen sliced okra
1 1/2 tsp. filé powder
1 tsp. dried thyme
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 Tbsp. barley miso paste (optional)
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 tsp. Tabasco sauce, or to taste
2 to 3 cups cooked long-grain white rice
Makes 4 to 6 servings
For the Cake:
1/2 cup soy milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
2 pkgs. dry yeast
1/3 cup warm water
Egg replacer equivalent to 3 eggs
1 tsp. grated lemon rind
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon
4 1/2–5 cups self-rising flour, sifted
1 lb. vegan cream cheese (try Tofutti brand)
1 tsp. soy milk
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1-inch baby doll, bean, or nut (optional)
For the Lemon Glaze:
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. lemon juice
2 Tbsp. water
Food coloring (optional)
Note: For a traditional king cake, make purple, green, and yellow frosting and frost the cake in stripes.
Makes 8 to 10 servings
And to wash it all down?
Beer, of course! It is Mardi Gras, no? And beer is surprisingly healthier than a lot of other drinks, including milk.
According to Harvard Medical School, drinking a moderate amount of alcohol can protect the heart and circulatory system and may prevent gallstones and type 2 diabetes. Milk, on the other hand, has been linked to heart disease, diabetes, strokes, cancer, and even osteoporosis. And Archives of Internal Medicine published a study that found that women who drink one or two glasses of beer or wine per day are significantly less likely to gain weight or suffer from obesity.
So, laissez les bons temps rouler!
Michelle Kretzer learned about factory farming while pursuing a degree in Journalism at the University of Kentucky. She immediately stopped eating meat and dedicated herself to the cause of animal rights. When she is not writing for the PETA Foundation, Michelle enjoys traveling, collecting Beatles memorabilia, and finding great cruelty-free shoes and bags.